Maximising programmatic delivery on premium inventory

Emmanuel Josserand Brand, Agency and Industry Relations

In a previous FW Council Europe (FWCE) position paper, Cracking the Programmatic Conundrum, we outlined three approaches being taken by premium video providers to incorporate programmatic trading to grow local markets, manage inventory more effectively and boost the overall value they can provide.

Premium video publishers and PayTV operators have a proven reputation of providing engaged environments for advertisers, and unique linear and digital offerings, characterised by the following:

  1. the content that they monetise includes long form content such as live events and simulcast channels;
  2. unique and carefully curated user experiences – with viewers exposed to an appropriate number of ads, in line with the content, separated by industry to avoid dilution of messages;
  3. direct relationship with engaged audiences, and clear adherence to regulations;
  4. close control of the supply/demand relationship and early operations planning;
  5. extensive footprint of endpoints (OTT, STB, IPTV…) and complex creative management processes;
  6. rich and valuable first-party data.

Premium video requires very specific programmatic tools, for instance programmatic buying practices cannot simply be applied to live TV on digital channels. In the context of live TV, industry buyers (such as DSPs), need to build a robust infrastructure, able to manage high levels of concurrent viewership, delivering the right ad, to the right people, at the right pace. When executed well, premium video has the ability to deliver impactful campaigns through access to desirable, engaged audiences, in the most effective environments.

In order to deliver optimal ad selection across all demand channels, premium video publishers should consider an ad server that provides a unified decision across guaranteed and non-guaranteed campaigns whether they are executed via direct-sold insertion orders or programmatic OpenRTB bids.

Advanced ad servers offer an integrated supply side platform (SSP) to provide server-side access to programmatic demand which can be fed directly into the ad selection process.

A fully integrated SSP will offer important benefits for programmatic buyers:

  • root access to the ultimate ad selection decision in the publisher ad server:
    • access to more opportunities (rather than only one per ad break);
    • optimized path to supply (with no intermediary auctions or ad decisions);
    • better budget management (as invalid bids are filtered pre-auction rather than post-auction).
  • server-to-server integrations:
    • enhanced troubleshooting;
    • informed ad decision that takes true DSP bid price and creative attributes into consideration.

There are a number of aspects involved with premium video, which media buyers, DSPs and other partners need to account for in their processes in order to take full advantage of the opportunity provided by this inventory.

To this end, the FreeWheel Council for Premium Video has put together a guide to help buy-side technology partners maximise programmatic delivery on premium inventory.

For instance, when it comes to user data for geo targeting, programmatic buyers often implement geography targeting within the DSP campaign settings, to optimise delivery to the most relevant users.
However, the absence or obfuscation of IP Address in the bid requests may result in the non-delivery of campaigns that use DSP geo targeting.

Best practices:
– Work with the ad-server team to determine the best way to handle geo- targeting in the absence of user data in the bid request.
– Encourage buyers to work with publishers to target deals towards particular geos.
– Consider implementing support for the OpenRTB Geo object, in particular and

The guide covers 10 key topics including: user data, measurement, pacing & reporting, unified decision, live streaming and programmatic guaranteed.

Download the full guide here >>